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Tuesday, June 21

The following day, still buzzing from the previous night, I went to watch some comedy. I sat at the back of the room, perhaps a little too self-assured, and mocked some of the truly awful acts we saw. I didn't heckle them, just laughed at them for the wrong reasons. One particular act, who temporarily deluded himself to think he was Ross Noble, had me in stitches because he was just talking gibberish. It was a great example of terrible performance.

A pair of new acts took to the stage (separately) with jokes that were either as old as the hills or very racist. Not that there are degrees of racism (as I'm often quick to point out in my set) but there's obvious racism and subtle racism and they were in the category of the obvious. For each I kept a count of the offensive and a count of the hack jokes. One of them scored highest on the old-school-stolen jokes front and was back announced as "so and so, and his joke collection" - classic! Just for those people who don't know the etiquette of the comedy world. In the alternative comedy circuit - i.e. the circuit where you don't do racist, homophobic, sexist or mother-in-law jokes (except, perhaps, with post-modern irony) you write your own jokes, or, at least, perform jokes that you have had written for you (or given to you). You do not come on stage and do Les Dawson's act from 1979! The act who scored 20 points for stolen jokes (and those were just the ones we recognised) was clearly ignorant of the etiquette.

In a scene reminiscent of Les Miserables, we plotted revolution after the gig... then I went home singing songs from Les Mis and forgot all about it.

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